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How to Prepare for a Hurricane


More Hurricane Prep Tips
Sometimes the best thing to do is simply evacuate, so be sure to leave if the authorities tell you it's time to go.
Sometimes the best thing to do is simply evacuate, so be sure to leave if the authorities tell you it's time to go.
Stephen Morton/Getty Images

High winds can easily topple trees. If the trees are close to your house, trim the branches, or remove the trees outright. If you're building a new house, the experts recommend planting trees far enough away to prevent any damage should they fall [source: FEMA].

Protect your roof by installing straps and clips. These devices will securely fasten your roof to the frame of the house. Roofs aren't cheap. Your insurance company will be happy. Reinforce your garage doors. Bring in all toys, lawn furniture and garbage cans. They can become airborne projectiles [source: Ready.gov]. Make sure you neighbor does the same.

If you can, build a safe room. A safe room is a place the entire family can go when a storm hits. Stock it with food, medicine, flashlights and other supplies.

The chances of a power outage during a hurricane are high. The power might be out for days, or weeks. Many people buy generators for an alternate source of power. There are two types of generators: portable generators that run on gas and standby generators.

Portable generators are labor intensive. You will have to keep filling them with gas – and that's if you can get it. You will also have to run extension cords to your appliances. You will need to keep your portable generator outside. Don't ever keep one in the garage, basement or even near a window. The carbon monoxide fumes will overwhelm you [source: Cannarsa].

Standby generators, however, are permanently installed by a professional. When the power goes out, it flips a switch, and the standby generator powers up. These types of generators are fueled by natural gas or propane. They are expensive to buy and install, roughly $10,000 [source: Cannarsa].

The most important tip for how to prepare for a hurricane, especially for those near the shore, is to know the evacuation route. When the authorities tell you it's time to leave, get out.


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